#RefugeesWelcome

When you ask me, Where do you come from?
how do I answer? How does anyone?
All of us sound different on my street.
In each of us, so many of these crossings
– and in this city, so many crossings meet.
Say ach y fi. Say bore da. Say croeso.

(from ‘The Unicorn’, The Bridle, 2011, Salt)

25 years ago London said croeso to me.  I’ve been a ‘Welsh-sounding Auckland pakeha’ , a ‘Kiwi-sounding East Anglian’, a ‘rural-sounding Cambridge undergraduate’, a ‘posh-sounding Forest of Deaner’.  I’ve been ‘Welsh’, I’ve been ‘English’, I’ve been ‘Wenglish’. I’ve been a ‘tomboy’, I’ve been’butch’, I’ve been ‘femme’, I’ve been ‘straight’, I’ve been ‘bi’, I’ve been ‘queer’.  However I’ve chosen to identify – however hazily, with whatever imperfect knowledge, (and no matter that these days I find these identity labels for myself less and less helpful and don’t bother with them*) – London has made room for me.

We’re all descended from migrants if you go back far enough.  Why wouldn’t we welcome more of our own?

(* but that’s my privilege speaking, of course, that I can evade them.)

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2 thoughts on “#RefugeesWelcome

  1. Meryl: Very apt considering the incendiary atmosphere surrounding the EU ‘debate’ and its resulting laziness and racism concerning immigrants. Also congratulations to Wales in the Euros! I think ‘our boys’ were tired and emotional!

    1. Thanks, Derek! I’m aware a whole complex of issues has been smooshed into this Referendum, which should – but perhaps can’t, especially in the wake of Jo Cox’s death – be debated without emotion, or any ‘massaging’ of statistics and other information.

      And on a less weighty note – ta! GoWales! Meryl

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